Master and Engineer

Humid Tropical Forest

Course objectives

Acquisition of some fundaments of the functioning of tropical forests. Make students aware of preservation issues of biodiver-sity in the wet Tropics within a scientific, verifiable corpus of knowledge.


Course contents


  • Functioning of tropical forests: biogeography; geomorphology; pedogenesis; soil identification and plant-soil relationships; botany; definition, assessment and conservation of biodiversity; forest dynamics
  • Forest management issues in French Guyana: introduction to the specificities of French Guyana, traditional production systems, forest management, tropical woods, forest industries, Non-Timber Forest Products

Fieldwork projects

Group projects tackle technical or scientific issues related to various thematics such as tree rooting systems, management of woody resources, plant-soil interactions, tree inventory, forest typology, standing wood quality, vegetation mapping, and mangrove characterisation...

Teaching and learning methods

Lectures,seminars, exercices at ENGREF-Kourou and fieldtrips (2 weeks). Fieldwork projects (2 weeks, including bibliographical work, fieldwork, data analyse and oral defence)


Rating of the oral defence of fieldwork projects


Competences acquired


Understanding of some principles of functioning and management of a wet tropical forest. Collective implementation of a fieldwork project. Aptitude to living and working in a wet tropical environment

Important information

French Guyana does not belong to Schengen area. Non-European students needs an additional visa to go there, which can be obtained from French embassies and consulates (from abroad) and from Prefectures (in France).

Dates (session 2011)

From Sunday the 4th of September to Monday the 3rd of October 2011.

Web site of the module (UMR Ecofog)

UFR G-ENV — AgroParisTech

Centre de Montpellier
648 rue Jean-François Breton
BP 44494
34090 Montpellier Cedex 5